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Cointreau supports Nigerian small businesses with €20,000 grant

“Pursue your passions, fulfil your dreams, reveal yourself!” That was the message a global drink company, La Maison Cointreau, told 10 Nigerian small business owners last week when it awarded them with €20,000 in grant.

Cointreau Creative Crew, philanthropic programme from Cointreau, launched Nigeria in April this year, seeks to encourage country’s small business owners to “dream, dare, create.”

At the unveiling of the 10 selected applicants for the €20,000 grant launched in August this year, the company said it remained committed to “helping inspire young women move beyond maintaining the status quo by motivating and supporting advancement in their chosen career fields which is only achievable through the willingness to create and explore new avenues of self expression.”

Of the 19 businesses selected from hundreds of applications, Entrepreneurship+ learnt that 10 finalists whose businesses received the highest votes during the public voting phase to the CCC will be mentored for a two-month period before the finale event in January 2017.

The 10 finalists selected includedtTtysoon.com, Nigeria’s first retail web-to-print store; Cash Madam, a simple, innovative solution created to help women in particular, and other small and growing business owners in developing economies like Nigeria; workarena: 1850, an online platform which aims to change the way business owners find qualified apprentices and graduate apprentices for their businesses within Nigeria; Vegetable and Fruit Processing, aimed at sourcing vegetables and fruits from locally farmers scattered all over Nigeria.

Others are Introduction of Biotechnology, which helps in the production of a clean, non-explosive and an environmental friendly gas called Biogas; I-Skills 42, an empowerment project with the aim of providing ICT literacy to tens of thousands of Nigerians using MELU; and Tanabio Environmental, a start-up renewable energy production business that will convert organic waste such as animal waste and agricultural waste into cooking fuel (bio-gas) and organic fertilizer through anaerobic digestion.

Waste to Décor, which makes creative works of art from waste products like bottles, newspapers, magazines, straws, plastic, wood, CD tapes, and the likes; Green Diamond, a project which will locally plant, grow and sell flowers in Nigeria and Nsaata Africa, a bespoke shoemaking business started in Lagos, Nigeria in 2016 were also selected.